Fireworks exploded to life overhead: Hercules killing the Nemean lion, Artemis chasing the boar, George Washington (who, by the way, was a son of Athena) crossing the Delaware. ‘Hey, Grover,’ I called. He turned at the edge of the woods. ‘Wherever you’re going – I hope they make good enchiladas.’ Grover grinned, and then he was gone, the trees closing around him. ‘We’ll see him again,’ Annabeth said. I tried to believe it. The fact that no searcher had ever come back in two thousand years… well, I decided not to think about that. Grover would be the first. He had to be. July passed. I spent my days devising new strategies for capture-the-flag and making alliances with the other cabins to keep the banner out of Ares’s hands. I got to the top of the climbing wall for the first time without getting scorched by lava. From time to time, I’d walk past the Big House, glance up at the attic windows and think about the Oracle. I tried to convince myself that its prophecy had come to completion. You shall go west, and face the god who has turned. Been there, done that – even though the traitor god had turned out to be Ares rather than Hades.